PULLMAN – Two men have been arrested in connection with a series of small arson fires that were set on the WSU Pullman campus early Monday morning.
Twenty-one-year-old David Miner and 18-year-old Ian Copland have been charged with five counts of first degree arson and four counts of reckless burning. Police told KLY-News that the two “appeared to be intoxicated.”
Starting at about 1 a.m., public safety officers from Pullman and WSU responded to a fire set in a trash can outside the Stephenson dormitory complex that was extinguished quickly. Three other fires burning in and around the dorm included a newspaper rack and a pair of bulletin boards.
Residents at the Stephenson dorm were evacuated, and one woman was treated with oxygen after she used a fire extinguisher.
Other fires included several trash cans fires in the parking structure of the Fine Arts Museum. And, at the Owen Science Library another trash can fire was found, as well as trees and shrubs on fires.
Although some cosmetic work will be needed at different fire sites, no structural or long-term damage is thought to have been incurred.
According to a press release from the WSU Police Department, Miner and Copland “are expected to be arraigned later [Monday] or [Tuesday] in Colfax.”
This is the second time in six months that a rash of suspicious fires has broken out early morning in Pullman. Five fires were lit there during one night and early morning last November.
Those fires destroyed a nine-unit apartment building, a house, a couple of garages and a number of vehicles. At least three people were hurt in the blazes, but no arson arrests were ever made.
It’s unknown if there’s any connection between the November fires and those started Monday morning.
WSU Police Chief Bill Gardner said both would be charged with five counts of arson in the first degree and four counts of reckless burning in the second degree. They are expected to be arraigned later today or tomorrow in Colfax.